Our theme for Lent is “The Church in Our Hands.” This theme got me thinking about youth ministry and the impact it has had on my life and on others. In 11 years of student ministry, I feel like I’ve seen a little bit everything. Back to school events. Launch of small groups. Speaking at the youth worship services. Speaking in big church. An event created by the devil called the all-night lock-in. Scavenger hunts. Driving a kid home after waiting an hour because his parents never showed up. Being at the hospital all night because a kid got sick on a trip. Tough conversations with a member of the church. Firing a volunteer youth worker. Seeing my best youth fall away from the church. Yep, I’ve seen a lot.
But I’ve also seen young people make a commitment to Christ for the first time. I’ve seen troubled teens become incredible leaders. I’ve seen former youth become pastors and missionaries. I’ve seen adults become amazing youth volunteers. I’ve seen depressed and isolated teenagers find a family within the church. I’ve seen over a thousand teenagers worshipping together. I’ve seen God do amazing things!
I accepted Christ due in large part to an amazing youth group who loved me into the faith. I will forever be grateful for churches and adults who invest in the lives of young people. Thank you for praying for us! Thank you for giving so that our youth ministry can have amazing resources and facilities! Thank you for serving in the church and thank you for loving Jesus! Keep it up…our young people need you!
(An awesome video by Simply Youth Ministry)